Beta-alanine can be very beneficial to weight trainers looking to improve strength or muscle mass. Those who weight train are always looking for an edge to help them push harder. beta-alanine may provide this ‘edge’ for many trainers. Training harder builds muscle and makes you stronger. Beta-alanine is therefore included in many pre-workout supplements available on the market. What is it that makes it so beneficial to strength and hypertrophy training? Here is some information on why you should use beta-alanine for weight training and what kind of training will make maximum use of the boost.
How Does Beta-Alanine Improve Weight Training?
One of the effects of beta-alanine is that it increases power output while training. This means that if you are taking beta-alanine properly your power during weights sessions will go up. To make sure that you are getting benefits from beta-alanine you need to be taking the supplement throughout the day. Studies have shown that when taken properly, beta-alanine will drastically improve your overall power output. Beta-alanine also helps support your central nervous system. This means that when your brain signals for a muscle contraction more muscle fibres respond. Having a greater fibre response means more power. A nervous system supported by beta-alanine doesn’t get tired so easily, so having your muscles feeling ‘dead’ won’t happen so often.
What Kind of Training Should I be Doing While Using Beta-Alanine?
There are a few ways to take advantage of the effects of beta-alanine. You can use the increase in power available or the ability to do more reps, or both. To take full advantage of the power increase from beta-alanine, try reducing your reps and increasing your weight. Something like 5×5 training will work very well. To take advantage of the resistance to fatigue providing by beta-alanine, try something like 4 sets of 10-12 reps. You will see that the two different styles of training are targeted towards 2 separate goals. 4 sets of 10 is mainly for muscle growth whereas 5×5 is for raw strength.
Will I Lose Gains if I stop using Beta-Alanine?
The advantages of beta-alanine are present as long as beta-alanine levels in the body are high. Once you stop taking beta-alanine your levels begin to drop and so will the benefits. This is worth remembering if you use beta-alanine supplementation in the lead up to a competition but stop use before the day of the event. However, the gains that you achieve while using beta-alanine will not fade. Any extra muscle will stay. It is the result of being able to push your body harder than before, not the higher level of beta-alanine in your body.